There is a buzz of excitement in Malawi football circles, as the inaugural Women’s National Football League kicks off on Saturday (29 May 2021).
Twenty-four (24) teams from across the Southern African country will take part in the league that lasts until September 2021, Football Association of Malawi (FAM) has announced.
Officially called “FAM Women’s League”, the 24 teams will split into Regional and National phases. Eight teams will play on round-robin format in each region.
Top three teams from each region will advance to the national stage, making it a nine-member national league.
National Women’s Football Association (NWFA) General Secretary, Linah Mtegha, told FAM Media that she was looking forward to a stiff league competition.
“We are happy that the League is starting after waiting for a year-long due to the Covid-19 pandemic. As NWFA, we are expecting exciting games, which will be more competitive because the players are eager to play after being idle for year.
“We, however, know that the Covid-19 pandemic is still among us, so we have put in place a number of measures to make sure our players, officials and everyone at the match venues is safe. All matches will be played behind closed venues, temperatures will be checked at the entrance and masking up and sanitizing will be a must to all people attending our,” Mtegha added.
Recently, NWFA Chairperson, Suzgo Ngwira, assured that they were ready to roll out the league, adding “every journey starts with the first step.”
National coach McNebert Kazuwa told CAFOnline.com that he is delighted with the league’s kickoff.
“I am happy with start of the league because that is where we can look for talent for strengthening the national team. We know the players we have for the national team, but we now need to patch it up. The only way we can identify players is by seeing them in action—performing on the ground,” Kazuwa said.
“I will be monitoring the girls in the Northern Region likewise my colleague in the Centre, Andrew Chikhosi and Maggie Chombo in the South. People say we only select players from the same clubs but now, the national league will help us to build a strong national team,” Kazuwa added.
Malawi’s pioneer woman footballer, Maggie Chombo, told CAFOnline.com that the national league will bring diversity to national team selection.
“As a coach for Blantyre Zero, I look forward to the kickoff of the league as it will afford the national team a wide pool of talent to select from,” she said.
Notable teams for the Southern Region are Blantyre Zero FC, Ntopwa Super Queens FC, whereas the Central Region giants are Skippers FC and DD Sunshine FC where Moyale Sisters FC and Topik Queens FC are the clubs to watch from the Northern Region.
Blantyre Zero, DD Sunshine and Moyale are the defending champions of the regional leagues for the South, Centre and Northern regions respectively.
Teams such as DD Sunshine have produced top players such as Tabitha Chawinga and her sister Temwa. The sisters play for Wuhan FC in China.